Greek Company HelioSphera to Build Thin-Film Solar Factory in Philadelphia

heliosphera solar panel factory photo

Photo: HelioSphera
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia?
Good news for Philly! HelioSphera, a Greek company, has announced that it will build a $500 million, 500,000 square feet thin-film solar panel factory in the city. It's going to be located in the Navy Yard and could be operating as early as 2011 and should reach an annual production capacity of about 160 megawatts. Local governments are contributing about $49 million in grants and loans, and the the plant should create about 400 jobs plus the construction jobs.
robot arm photo

Photo: HelioSphera
Right Across from a Refinery
According to the Philadelphia Inquirer, HelioSphere picked Philly after looking at over 35 sites in 8 states. What sealed the deal was "the quality of Philadelphia's workforce, the proximity to transportation, and the government incentives sealed the deal for the city."

Somewhat ironically, this new solar plant will be very close to a refinery:

Symbolic of the major shift under way in the nation's diet for energy, the new 500,000-square-foot factory will be located directly across the Delaware River from the Sunoco Eagle Point Refinery in Westville, N.J. Four hundred refinery workers were furloughed there last month when Sunoco shut the plant because of falling demand for motor fuel.

Via Philadelphia Inquirer, Greentech Media
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